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Publius Nonius Severus

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Everything posted by Publius Nonius Severus

  1. Publius Nonius Severus

    Norse influence in the English Language

    Building upon Doc's and Sonic's explanation of the linguistical influences, I would like to throw my two cents in. I cannot speak with any academic authority, but as an amateur student of languages, I think one of the most enduring effects was the role that the Viking incursions may have had in the loss iof inflection in the eventual development of Modern English. One of the reasons I think English is so heavily taught today as a second language is the simplification of grammatical rules that follows with minimal inflection. For the other languages I learned, the most difficult part was learning all the various rules for noun/adjective declension and verb conjugation. I never realized how simple English grammar was in comparison to so many other languages until you get the nominative, accusative, dative, genetive...subjunctive, conditional, etc. etc. thrown at you. Sure, there are still some elements of inflection in English (mostly seen in pronouns, marking possesive with a clitic "s", etc.)., but if English were heavily inflected and as difficult as it currently is to learn proper pronunciation, I think we would see and hear far less English in the world. So, what does this have to do with the Vikings? Old English was a heavily inflected language. I had always wondered how and when what we today call Modern English lost its inflection. I found some interesting information at the following site: The Loss of Inflections by Barry Rawling Specifially on the claim of some academics that: Of course this may not be the only or even the primary reason English grammar became more simple, but if true, I think it is a very important influence on how we all communicate today even if only an indirect "benefit" of the viking incursions.
  2. Publius Nonius Severus

    Major Roman Families

    If you are looking for a quick breakdown by name I suggest Les Gentes Romaines. It is a site in French but is easy to navigate and understand and gives notable members of Roman families by Gens. You may also want to look up families in Smith's Dictionary of Greek and Roman Biography and Mythology For both of these links, you need to know who you are looking for though. It is hard to decide which is a "Major Family" so a comprehensive lists may not be available, but, if you know who you want to find, these links should be a good start. For example, here is the Caesar branch from gens Julia in Smith's dictionary. Perhaps Nephele or others will be able to share more resources. Good luck!
  3. Publius Nonius Severus

    Another Name question.

    Good question, per William Smith:
  4. Publius Nonius Severus

    Legal and Institutional Chronology of the Roman Republic

    If you considered it of high enough quality, you could always link to the appropriate pages of the Google Books version of Cicero's works (if only in the interim). For example: Cicero de Rep. II.60 In the example above from De Republica, the source is Barham's The political works of Marcus Tullius Cicero. This is the same source as the Online Library of Liberty's HTML version of De Republica, but, is easier to link to since you can link to a specific page in Google Books unlike the OLL version which has entire book (in this case Book II) on the same HTML page without sections to link to individually. I know all of De Republica is available in this source from Google Books as well as De Officiis, and De Legibus. I am not sure about all of the letters but I haven't looked yet either. If you are interested in linking like this, I would be more than willing to help getting specific links for you (I am always looking for side projects!) Let me know!
  5. Publius Nonius Severus

    Games People Play

    Rummikub became a favorite of my wife and me. It is very similar to playing Gin rummy except with tiles instead of cards.
  6. Publius Nonius Severus

    Achaean War

    I've read modern speculation along these lines, but I don't see any primary source material that would support it. What are you talking about? Like Cato, I too am unfamiliar with any primary sources supporting the theory. A good deal of the specifics we do have come from fragmented sources unfortunately. The best chronology of the whole affair that I have found comes from Pausanias' Description of Greece. What I can find does not dismiss the suggestion that Rome "forced" them to revolt, but I think makes it unlikely. Let's look at a bulletized chronology: 147 B.C. -Roman envoys arrive to arbitrate between the Lacedaemonians and the Achaeans (disupte between them instigated by Diaeus). -The envoys are maltreated by the Achaeans (the work of Critolaus). 146 BC -Critolaus takes over for Diaeus and persuades the League to declare war. -Rome despatches Mummius to fight the Achaeans . -Metellus doesn't want Mummius to get all the credit so he sends envoys with terms to Critolaus. -Critolaus still refuses and his forces are defeated by Metellus. -Diaeus takes over and also refuses to entertain terms. -Mummius arrives, takes command, enters Corinth and... If Rome's actions up to the point where their legation was mistreated were designed to "force" the Achaeans into revolt it would have had to have been a very deep and complex political maneveur that could have easily failed (what if they simply said yes to their terms?). I am sure they could have enticed rebellion in a more simple manner if they were so inclined. I am of the opinion that at this point the Romans did not want another war (yet). Macedonia was still being settled and despite good progress in the war in Africa they were still fully engaged against Carthage. Now, it does appear that Mummius was ordered to attack and raze Corinth: But their is no evidence that the basis of this decision was for commercial purposes (but it leaves the door open for such a suggestion). My theory as to the reason war broke out was because Critolaus and Diaeus manipulated the situation in that direction for their own purposes. Why would they do such a thing (that so clearly appears to us to be a war they could not win)? From their perspective, this was most likely their last chance to maintain power. If Rome faced setbacks in their war against Carthage or wasw even outrightly defeated, the Achaens would have been in a very good position (the war was still in progrees when they started their shenanigans). Perhaps they felt if they did nothing, they would eventually be overcome...but if they could exert some dominance while Rome was stretched thin, and might reinforce their power. They rolled the dice and lost against unfavorable odds. However, I firmly believe had they not provoked Rome, Corinth would not have been razed. Would Rome have benefitted from a ruined Corinth...of course, but they would have had little justification for such actions without war.
  7. Publius Nonius Severus

    Plebeian entrance to the senate?

    It did vary over time, but the primary way for anyone to enter the Senate was getting voted in a higher magistracy. If you were elected as quaestor, the censors normally entered you into the senatorial census. That is not to say that you were there for life, the censors could remove you for various reasons. The other way to enter the Senate was to be appointed because of your (or your family's) dignitas by the Censors or by special appointment by a Dictator or other such means. For a more thorough treatment check out Smith's detailed description of the Senate: Senatus (scroll down to where is says p1018 on the right to jump right to how senators were selected.
  8. Publius Nonius Severus

    Norse influence in the English Language

    Excellent points and counter Doc...thanks for such a thorough treatment. I am in no position to refute...I am an amateur at exploring the evolution of languages so your explanation is really inciteful....clearly English is popular because it makes "business" sense...I guess I thought that its weak inflection just hastened its popularity. I just had a hard time seeing English being as popular as it is if it were actually Icelandic (which is the hardest language I have ever had to learn ((even harder than Latin)).
  9. Publius Nonius Severus

    three questions RE Caesar

    A little OT, but...If you are refereing to the use of the term "Imperator" as akin to "Emperor", I would say no. If you mean was this the defining moment that marked the end of the Republic...perhaps? There has been a lot of debate of what event/date marked the actual end of the Republic. Some months ago our Cato asked the question in a different thread: Who killed the Republic? Here's the quote:
  10. Publius Nonius Severus

    three questions RE Caesar

    This verifies the historian Ballard, who claims he did not officially adopt the title. Eventhough "Imperator" is not mentioned specificallu, Cassius Dio presents evidence that Caesar did not always employe every title he had, which I think makes the argument stronger:
  11. Publius Nonius Severus

    three questions RE Caesar

    I agree completely! In nearly all cases they are the first place I look when I want to look something up or get refreshed. Considering how comprehensive his dictionaries are, that they are online at various places (Lacus Curtius, Google Books, Ancient Library, and the Univ of Mich.), they have excellent source references, and they are free...they are absolutely invaluable tools in any student of Roman history!
  12. Publius Nonius Severus

    three questions RE Caesar

    I cannot answer two and three, but for the first, Smith states:
  13. Publius Nonius Severus

    Law and Order in Rome

    Were these magistrates among the Vintigisexviri? No, mi Cicero, I believe they were called vicomagistri, neighborhood magistrates. Here is a link to the appropriate article in Smith: Vicus The article discusses how they existed in the time of the Principate, but they also did pre-date Augustus.
  14. Publius Nonius Severus

    which came first, Lupercalia or tribune incident?

    Excellent analysis as usual, Cato! What I wrote above was not a theory based on evidence, just supposition so I would like to explore the matter further. Regarding this para: You make reference to other statements by Cicero that mention the Lupercalia incident. If I recall correctly, Cicero's take on Lupercalia (which he referenced several times in the Phillipics) was that it was part of Anthony's scheme to seize power after Caesar. Is this a correct summary? If it is, I see some potential conflicts between Nicolaus's interpretation and Cicero's (unless at the time of the incident, Anthony was conspiring with the Liberators). If not, could you expand further. I plan on reading more of what Cicero has to say but will not be able to until tonight.
  15. Publius Nonius Severus

    which came first, Lupercalia or tribune incident?

    No problem PP, great minds think alike, no? I also agree with you and the majority that the incident with the tribunes occured first. It could really go anyway really...The Lupercalia incident was a precurosr to putting diadems on Caesar's statue as Plutarch lays it out, or, my theory is the incident with Marullus and Flavius occurred first and as an attempt at damage control of how he dealt with the tribunes, Caesar rejected the diadem at the Lupericalia festival.
  16. Publius Nonius Severus

    which came first, Lupercalia or tribune incident?

    EDIT: PP beat me to it, again!!!! I need to check if he is online before I try replying to a post from now on...good show PP! These I had naturally read, save for Paterculus and Cicero. Paterculus puts the score now 5 to 1, and I can't access Cicero save in Latin and my Latin is sub-nominal at best. There are a couple of English sources for a good number of Cicero's works. Here is what I believe to be the relevant pasages from Cic. Philipp. xiii. 15 from Online Library of Liberty (also available from the Perseus Project):
  17. Publius Nonius Severus

    What did the Vikings do for us?

    Mi Augusta- I cannot answer your question, but since I am ex patria in Iceland currently, and the Icelanders are quite proud of their sagas...you might be able to see what the Vikings though about England for clues to your answer: Icelandic Saga Database Follow the link and search for "England". I have only looked for hits, I haven't actually looked through the results yet. Good Luck!
  18. Publius Nonius Severus

    Roman legal cases

    Hmmm, I am far from a jurist but here goes: I. actio de peculio. - Did the matter involve the Sticius's peculio? II. actio mandati contraria. - Is there an obligation to demand reimbursement? (Julianus or Titius?) III. actio de in rem verso. - Did Julianus derive andvantage from Sticius's actions since they were without his consent? IV. reivindicatio. (should read rei vindicatio I think) Is a claim to the property by one with the right to own property) probably by Julianus V. exceptio in factum. Is probably Sticius's reply to the the claim (his defense) but the in factum is used with findings, not law I think. My head is spinning!
  19. Publius Nonius Severus

    Law and Order in Rome

    The Aediles were charged with police powers. Here is how Smith describes it: William Smith, A Dictionary of Greek and Roman Antiquities: There were also neighborhood magistrates that could police their own neighborhoods as well I believe.
  20. Publius Nonius Severus

    Roman legal cases

    Interesting concept and case...this should be fun! Edit: Below I have made distinctions between ownership and possession as they were distinct in ancient Rome. I assume the case is about ownership (and argued as such), but it may not be...it may only be about possession in which case my arguments would need to be adjusted. I agree with Kosmo, the transfer is probaly legal and Sticius should be the rightful owner (based on the information we have)...but, I can see why Julianus brought forward the case. While Sticius was the property of Julianus, he could acquire no ownership of any thing (but he could acquire things for his master) and anything he posseses is the property of Julianus. The only caveat to this is whether or not Sticius had any peculium (money or other things expressly granted by the master to the slave). While a slave, even though any peculium would be Sticius', it was still owned by Julianus. Once manumitted, the peculim would be Sticius wholely as long as that was stipulated in the manumission and any debts to the former master were settled in full. So, what does all this have to do with the case before us? Well, I can see Julianus making claim that while Sticius was his slave when he directed Titius to purchase the land for Sticius, Sticius could not rightly own it and thus it belonged to Julianus. Yes, Sticius didn't transfer ownership until after Sticius was free, but what were the terms of the agreement between Sticius and Titius when Sticius "directed" him to acquire the land? Did he pay him for it or have an obligation to pay him? If he did, then it mostl likely belonged to Julianus. If he didn't then it is easy for Titius to claim that he owned the property and was under no obligation to sell it to Sticius AND only after Sticius was freed did he sell it to him. Nope! Dominium was the right of ownership. Possessio was the right to possess something. Someone with dominium could have possessio but someone with possessio could not necessarily have dominium .
  21. Publius Nonius Severus

    How does one pronounce Roman Latin?

    Wheelock has an excellent guide to pronuncation with audio examples here: Introduction to Latin Pronunciation If you are looking for a quick guide, page four of the following PDF should be just what you are looking for. Ancient pronunciation is on the far left. http://www.ai.uga.edu/mc/latinpro.pdf Good luck!
  22. Publius Nonius Severus

    Your screen name

    It took me about five years to finally decide on Publius Nonius Severus. I discovered my Romanitas about five years ago and took seriously the process for finally deciding on a name for my Roman "Persona". I tried to tie my real life persona and my Roman Persona together for my screen name. I wanted to choose the nomen of an established plebeian gens active in the period of the late Republic (my primary period of interest). I chose Nonius because there were several Nonii documented during the period and it partially resembles my real surname. I chose Publius because my real first names begins with a P so I thought that would be a good praenomen. I chose Severus for my cognomen after considering several possible descriptors for my paternal grandfather (who was the patriarch for the branch of my real family). I thought Severus was fitting, and several of the men in my family have an S name somewhere in the mix as well. Of course, had I know ahead of time that a major character in the Harry Potter series was named "Severus", I would have chosen a different one (and still may change one day). So, I ended up with a unique but plausible name for the period of my interest to express myself in all ways Roman.
  23. Publius Nonius Severus

    Comedians... your favorite(s)

    Edit: Wow, I have been one post behind all day today, lol! I have to go with Eddie Izzard. A friend turned me on to him a couple of years ago and I crack up whenever I listen to his stuff. Additionally, his performance on The Riche$ is outstanding as well (although not as comedic!). And of course, he has some brilliant routines on the Romans. One of which you can see below: Eddie Izzard - The Romans on YouTube
  24. Publius Nonius Severus

    Did Caesar's aunt (Julilla) marry Sulla?

    Edit: PP beat me to it again! Thanks for the response Ingsoc, but that's not the Julia I'm referring to. The book, and Wikipedia, allege that that woman's sister (known as Julilla or Julia Minor) married Sulla. Can't find a record of that anywhere. The marriage of Sulla and a 'Julilla" have just be one of the fill-in's McCullough used to make the story flow better. As stated above, there is no listing of Julilia on the Julian family tree. What McCullough may have used for a basis however is a reference to a passage in Plutarch's The Life of Sulla, Chap 6: Many think the woman listed as Ilia, is corrupted (either in PLutarch's text or the source he used) and should read Julia (or Julilia), hence the possibe connection to the Julian and most liklely served as McCullough's "source". I have never seen any other reference to Sulla being Caesar's uncle directly or indirectly.